First and foremost, the key to good reading comprehension is being an active reader. Whilst you may not be reading to your child as you would have done at a younger age, encouraging your child to read independently will always provide the strongest foundation for solid reading comprehension skills. A fantastic way to get children to engage and listen to stories is using Audiobooks.
Read on for some of our favourite tips for improving reading comprehension.
Always ask questions
Whether reading for fun or for a test, ask questions helps to gain a deeper understanding of the text. When your child is next reading encourage them to ask questions of the writing. Why did a character behave the way they did? Why did the author use the words they chose?
Questions like this won’t just allow you to create your own thoughts and answers. They also help to make your child more aware of any answers that are presented in the text. This technique can be applied to academic reading too. The questions you ask may even mirror those in the test!
Look for connections
Similarly to asking questions of a piece of text, looking for connections can be equally valuable. Connections can be between pieces of the text, providing you deeper insight into its meaning. Likewise, however, the connection could be personal. A personal connection to a piece of text can not only provide the opportunity for you to use your own life experience to understand a piece of writing better but can also be used to help you memorise a passage more clearly, through association.
Understanding what’s important and what’s not
Whilst you’ll likely not want to skip a single word when reading for pleasure, reading for comprehension sometimes requires reading around the lines to find key information fast. Likewise organising that information to be used later is just as important.
Some texts may do this job for you. Non-fiction books for example often have contents, glossary and chapter pages, this makes finding key information much easier. This isn’t the case for the majority of fictional writing.
Can your child remember key details about their favourite character? Being able to read between the lines and retain this kind of information is a highly valuable reading comprehension skill, so it should be practised.
At Kip McGrath, our highly qualified tutors provide in-depth learning and development programmes to suit your child’s requirements. Each of our students benefits from a free assessment, which sets you on the right track to reaching your educational goals. Get in touch today for more information.